Feb. 14, 2014
HOUSTON, Texas - Stephen F. Austin exploded for four runs in the first inning en route to a 7-1 victory over Army at the Houston Invite at Cougar Softball Stadium Friday afternoon. The game was the season opener for the Black Knights (0-1) while it was the second game of the tournament for the Ladyjacks (1-4) and their fifth game of the season.
Carlie Thomas (1-2), who pitched a four-hitter, struck out seven and did not issue a walk, lost out on her shutout in the top of the seventh when Army capitalized on two SFA errors to push across its lone run by Alex Gaffin its first-ever meeting with the Ladyjacks.
The Army junior first baseman opened the inning with a single down the left field line and moved to second on an error by the shortstop. Following back-to-back outs, Gaff crossed when the center fielder misplayed Amanda Nguyen'sflyout. Thomas stranded runners at first and second after striking out the next batter to end the game.
Shalie Day went 2-for-2 with three RBI and two runs scored in sparking SFA to its first win of the season. The Ladyjacks jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead on two hits and an error in the bottom of the first inning with Day's two-run homer closing out the scoring. Brittany Lewis was on board in that inning after ripping a two-run double into left center field.
SFA added single runs in the second, third and fifth innings with Day ripping her second homer, a solo shot in the fifth inning.
Army collected its first hit in the third inning when freshman Marah Housesingled down the left field line with one out, but was stranded following back-to-back outs.
In the sixth inning, freshman Alee Rashenskas singled to center field and advanced to third when the third baseman misplayed sophomore Kasey McCravey'sinfield grounder with two outs, but the third baseman got the next out to end that threat.
Four different Black Knights collected a hit with two from the freshman class.
Drawing starting duty in the circle was freshman Caroline Smith (0-1) who was touched for seven hits, five earned runs, along with walking just two of the 25 batters she faced. Newcomer Kristen West pitched the final inning and did not allow a hit or walk to the four batters she faced with one reaching on an error as Army committed two miscues and SFA three.
The Black Knights, who are playing five games at the tournament, have a stern test this evening taking on NCAA participant Nebraska at 8 p.m. (Eastern).